The night before Passover we decided to do a carb binge and chose AL DENTE where Chef Roberto Donna was actually holding a 3rd Anniversary Party for the restaurant in our neighborhood.
I am very sorry for the delay on this write-up, but Passover came and then my computer decided to misbehave, so I am quite backed up on this group!
At any rate Samuel looked at the menu and immediately chose the RAVIOLI del PLIN since he adores the butter sage sauce not to mention the meat stuffing and veal jus. They were superb and reminded me of how Chef Donna is truly one of the greatest pasta makers we know.
Before we ordered some anniversary nibbles arrived in the form of a shrimp arancini (fried risotto ball) which we offered to Sam as he loves them, not knowing it was risotto and shrimp. He was not happy as he truly does not like shrimp, at least for the past couple of years. When will this change again?
Prosciutto and parmesan cheese were on a slab of bread as was mozzarella and tomato, but the yummy tastes were the huge meatball with hot sauce and an Italian style mini-frittata.
We ordered a bottle of 2010 Val D'Aosta (Piedmont) called Donna's Nebbiolo which was specifically bottled for Chef Donna from near the French border (hence the label using the French valley's name Valle D'Aoste).
The wine is an awesome blend of 90% Nebbiolo with 5% each of Freisa and Neyret from the Caves Cooperatives de Donnas!
Will and I decided to order two starters to share. The Fried Zucchini Flowers with Ricotta, Lemon and a slight hint of mint were just in season and truly fresh and refreshing, while the Fried Sardines were superb with a Salsa Verde and Arugula topping. The bones lifted right out of each fish for simple bone-free degustation.
Will, knowing that Passover was 24 hours away chose the Pizza Salsiccia e Rapini with tomato sauce, smoked mozzarella, pork sausage, garlic and wonderfully fresh broccoli-rabe. I went traditional with the Veal Saltimbocca topped with Prosciutto and Sage in a rich thick Marsala Wine Sauce with Sautéed Spinach and a Potato Puree Tower.
We were way too full to even think of dessert and went home knowing that it might be a week without bread or pasta, but we had our fine share that night.
Congratulations Chef Donna on three wonderful years almost around the corner; it's good to have you so close!